Monday, October 3, 2022

Dale Steyn in ODIs – Greatest Hits

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Dale Steyn is tied with Shaun Pollock as the highest wicket-taker for South Africa in Tests, and hasn’t done too badly in one-day internationals either.

35-years-old, Steyn represented Proteas in 116 ODI’s taking 180 wickets with remarkable figures of 6-39 against Pakistan.

“I will be trying to get to that (2019 ICC Cricket) World Cup. But after the World cup i don’t see myself playing white-ball cricket for South Africa. By the time the next World Cup comes, I will be 40,” said Dale Steyn.

It’s a good time then to look back at some of his deadliest spells in 50-over international cricket over the years.

5/50 v India in Nagpur (ICC Cricket World Cup 2011)

It was a high-scoring match in Nagpur where India raced away after opting to bat with Virender Sehwag (73) and Sachin Tendulkar (111) making merry at the top. The breakthrough came from the bowling of Faf du Plessis before Steyn jolted the Indian line-up by sending back Gautam Gambhir and Yusuf Pathan.

India were still looking strong, but Steyn packed in a superb late spell and dismissed Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra and Munaf Patel, all of whom were no match for his pace. India were bowled out in 48.4 overs, and it took South Africa 49.4 overs to cross it. Think what might have happened had Steyn not finished things off quickly?

5/25 v Pakistan in Abu Dhabi, November 2013

Steyn could make the ball scream and shout when at his best, like in Abu Dhabi in the fourth ODI of the late 2013 tour. The batsmen had given him the runs to play with – 266/5 – and play he did. He didn’t get wickets early on but started with a maiden over and had a first spell of 4-1-9-0. The second spell was 2-0-5-0. The wickets came later – two in his third spell of two overs and then three in one over, his ninth, to knock Pakistan out.

6/39 v Pakistan in Port Elizabeth, November 2013

An outstanding performance but in a losing cause. Steyn accounted for Nasir Jamshed and Mohammad Hafeez early to leave Pakistan at 22/2. Ahmed Shehzad’s century shored up the visitors, but they might have scored much more than 262 had Steyn not returned to send back Umar Akmal and Shahid Afridi and also pick up two tail-end wickets. In reply, despite Hashim Amla’s 98, South Africa stopped one run short.

3/17 v India in Durban, December 2013

Centuries from Quinton de Kock and Amla gave South Africa 280/6. It was a steep target, but India might have had a chance had it not been for some expert work from Steyn and Lonwabo Tsotsobe. Tsotsobe got 4/25 while Steyn sent back Shikhar Dhawan early for a duck and came back to account for Ravichandran Ashwin and Umesh Yadav later.

4/34 v Australia in Harare, September 2014

South Africa haven’t always had luck going their way in tournament finals but on this occasion against Australia they pulled it off. And Steyn was the hero. The wicket of the late Phil Hughes came first, and then he had Aaron Finch and Glenn Maxwell in one over – the 29th – before sending back Brad Haddin later. A supreme effort restricted Australia to 217/9. South African needed just 40.5 overs to cross the target.

Read also: Dale Steyn to retire from white-ball cricket after Cricket World Cup 2019

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